Last Saturday the magic of the Eels by Mark Oliver Everett was staged at the Milan Conservatory. Brilliant and unpredictable, Mr. E starts the show (or, rather, does not start the show) with a projection of a Russian cartoon, Cheburashkaa bizarre and peculiar choice that surprised the 1,500 people present at the Conservatory, who were kept in the dark about the screening at the artist's express wish. A short break, followed by the trailer for the celebratory DVD that will be released (it is not known when), and then the concert proper. Mr. E appeared on stage dressed in a black tailcoat and tuba, cigar in his mouth, walking stick and Jack Daniel's on the piano. Accompanying him, Alan 'Big Al' Hunter to the bass counter and Chet Lister engaged in a drum kit consisting of a dustbin and a toolbox, and grappling with a saw, mandolin and guitar. Behind them, the announced female string quartet. After almost two hours of the show, it ends with a surprise: with the lights on and people on their way home, the Eels return to the stage in their pyjamas, singing a cover of Prince and the outro 'Mr. E's Beautiful Blues'.

Here is the setlist :

Fresh Feeling
Packing Blankets
Bride Of Theme From Blinking Lights
From Which I Came/ A Magic World
Son Of A Bitch
Dirty Girl
Ant Farm
Jeannie's Diary
My Beloved Monster
Bus Stop Boxer
Pretty Ballerina
I Like Birds
It's A Motherfucker
Taking A Bath In Rust
Railroad Man
Trouble With Dreams
If You See Natalie
I'm Going To Stop Pretending That I Didn't Break Your Heart
Dead Of Winter
Novocaine For The Soul
Losing Streak
Climbing To The Moon

Blinking Lights (For Me)
Hey Man (Now You're Really Living)
Things The Grandchildren Should Know

Dog Faced Boy

I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man (Cover by Prince)
Mr. E's Beautiful Blues (outro)

To listen again to what Mr. E called his best concert in Italy, Popular Radio will feature an Eels Special with an interview with Mr. E and some songs performed at the Conservatory, tomorrow Thursday 13 October within Patchanka (2.50 p.m.).

Thanks for the photo Stefano Masselli.